Monday, December 30, 2013

Sata to lay foundation for new KK airport
By Chiwoyu Sinyangwe
Thu 07 Nov. 2013, 14:01 CAT

PRESIDENT Michael Sata is today expected to lay the foundation stone for the construction of a new terminal at Kenneth Kaunda International Airport.

The construction of the US$360 million ultra-modern terminal is expected to start on the eastern side of the current 1967 terminal which would be upgraded and converted to handle domestic travel after receiving a "major facelift".

National Airports Corporation Limited managing director Robinson Misitala said with the ground-breaking ceremony, the contractor was expected to move on site before the end of the year.

"The actual works are earmarked to start before the end this year," Misitala said in an interview.

"His Excellency the President will tomorrow today afternoon going to lay the foundation stone for these works."

Last September, NACL board chairperson Mubanga Musakanya said Lusaka and Zambia would never be the same with the coming of the new terminal at KKIA.

The project is expected to create over 2,000 direct jobs during the construction phase and the new airport infrastructure expected to be completed by October 2017 to provide facilities comparative to the best in the region.

Musakanya said building of the terminal will be done by a consortium of China Jiangxi and local consultants to be led by Asphalt Roads Zambia managing director Joseph Mwewa.

"These contractors have looked at the project and they have tapped into the same passion that we as NACL have, which is to become a region hub," Musakanya said.

"They have a vision that will make us the best. In the past, a lot of these big contracts have been given to foreign contractors but the foreigners would come and undertake the projects and thereafter externalise the monies made and leave the country, take the money out and they will go. But these Zambians are doing it for themselves and for their nation Zambia. They are building for their country and their children and generations to come and they will ensure the money remains in Zambia to develop the country's economy even further."

The new terminal is expected to have the capacity to handle four million passengers per year and would comprise among other things six aero-bridges, a 30-room transit hotel and a presidential lounge.

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